The principal objective of this case study is to document the progress of regeneration in two forest plots harvested under different schemes in 1996, four years prior to this investigation. A secondary objective is to describe the recent evolution of environmentally sound forest harvesting as practiced by Precious Woods Amazon (PWA), the Brazilian subsidiary of Precious Woods Switzerland, in Amazonian primary forests in Brazil.
This case study has three parts:
A general description of the PWA operation, including forest inventory and planning, road and skidtrail construction, felling, extraction, operations at the landing and long-distance transport as elements of the harvesting operations.
A comparison of regeneration in gap openings as well as on skidtrails in two forest plots harvested under different harvesting schemes, including a description of the subsequent condition of the trees recorded during the previous case study in the same areas.
A description of recent developments at Precious Woods Amazon to provide information on merchandising and financial aspects as well as changes in harvesting operations and timber processing at the company sawmill.
The two forest plots considered in this evaluation were initially examined in as part of a case study carried out by FAO in August 1996 (Winkler 1997) to test the applicability of the FAO Model Code of Forest Harvesting Practice (Dykstra and Heinrich 1996) with a commercial company in the Brazilian Amazon.
Four years after harvesting, environmental impacts were evaluated for two 10-ha forest plots, or cutting units, that had been harvested under different schemes:
Forest Plot B/G09 was harvested by a “reduced impact logging system” developed by Precious Woods Amazon, using directional tree felling, pre-planned skidtrail alignment, and controlled ground skidding.
Forest Plot G/F09 as a comparison was harvested by the “conventional logging system” commonly used in the Amazon region in Brazil.